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#748087 - Wed May 18 2011 09:19 PM 3600 Good or Bad  
custardtart  Offline
New Guy
Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 75
Hi Everyone

I have posted on here before, several times, I am trying to come to terms with the following .... I bought what I was led to believe was a 1954 3100 1/2 ton, what I actually got in the container in the UK from seller in CA is a 3/4 ton 3600 with issues to sort.
I'm ok with issues if they can be sorted, I now know the seller 'shafted me' as he has with other people ( I have evidence to back this up in case he pops on here saying otherwise ).
Distance is a problem and time zones, to put it all in a nutshell, I have come up against the same thing .... great response in trying to help me but as soon as I mention I have a 3600, IT BECOMES HARD WORK.
SO .... Have I been 'TOTALLY SHAFTED' ?. Once and for all dear folks, can I get the info to have a good nights sleep.
I have contacted JIM CARTER and CLASSIC PARTS etc and they have a few parts for 3600 but have put me in touch with TOM MYERS SALVAGE in OK.
SO .... What cannot I get, what can I convert from 3600 to 3100, it's a 8-lug ( another nasty piece I'm told ) .... god I'm fed up.

Thanks Gary
1954 Thames E494C,
1957 Thames 300E,
1967 Austin A60 Pick-up,
1954 Chevy 3600 Pick-up.

#748090 - Wed May 18 2011 09:30 PM Re: 3600 Good or Bad [Re: custardtart]  
Grigg  Offline
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 8,995
Lexington, VA
If you wanted a 1/2 ton then having received a 3/4 ton is obviously a problem.

Otherwise a 3/4 ton is just as fine a truck, if not better in my mind. Nothing wrong with 8 lugs or having a little more substantial truck. And at least over here parts aren't anything to worry about, anything you need can be either had new from the regular auto parts store, reproduction from Jim Carter and the like, or the few items that aren't available from them can be found used.


1951 GMC 250 in the Project Journals
1948 Chevrolet 6400 - Detroit Diesel 4-53T - Roadranger 10 speed overdrive - 4 wheel disc brakes
1952 Chevrolet 3800 pickup
---All pictures---
"First, get a clear notion of what you desire to accomplish, and then in all probability you will succeed in doing it..." -Henry Maudslay-

#748091 - Wed May 18 2011 09:31 PM Re: 3600 Good or Bad [Re: custardtart]  
hardcrab  Offline
Wrench Fetcher
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 53
Northern Neck of Virginia
Sorry you are in that position- I really hate dishonest people-

Anyway, from my limited knowlege here's my take-

The 3100 is more desireable/collectable and thus probably worth more in value. But, I personally like the 3/4 ton better- I like the look of the longer wheel base. I also like the fact that it was easier to put a standard replacement open drive rear end on with newer brakes (I used and S-10 with 3.42), and easy to put a 1/2 ton front axle and new disc brake kit. This gave me 5 or 6 lug wheels (depending on the rear you use). Most other parts are interchangable with the 3100. I have had no trouble finding parts I need- most of the reproduction places have 3/4 ton stuff.

I'm sure others will chime in with varying opinions, but that's mine.

Too bad there are so many scheisters in this world. I bet once you are into this project you will be happy with your 3600.

Best of luck!!!!

Bluesharp- If you don't blow you suck....

'50 Chevy 3600 "Ernest"

#748093 - Wed May 18 2011 09:42 PM Re: 3600 Good or Bad [Re: hardcrab]  
squeeze  Offline
Master Gabster
Joined: Jul 2001
Posts: 5,814
Vancouver Island
Gary - you will not convert the 3/4T truck to a 1/2T short of major work and money, most 3/4T stuff can be found, just takes more looking and ingenuity, and the body is the same so you still have the "look" - learn to live with what you got or pass it on to someone who'll love it - my experience is you Brits like passing vintage vehicles around frequently anyway, never satisfied grin


"When we tug a single thing in nature we find it attached to the rest of the world" John Muir
"When we tug a single thing on an old truck, we find it falls off" me
Some TF series details & TF heater pics & Rust-a-holics Unanimous parking lot

#748098 - Wed May 18 2011 09:59 PM Re: 3600 Good or Bad [Re: squeeze]  
Wrenchbender Ret.  Offline
Master Gabster
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 9,677
Lenexa Ks.
Most everything is available for that truck except brake drums are hard to come by.
Next time or any other Stovebolters looking to have something shipped let us know. There are always one of us in an area that will go look at something for you.

They say money can't buy happiness. It can buy old Chevy trucks though. Same thing.

1956 Chevy 1/2-Ton Pickup

#748102 - Wed May 18 2011 10:14 PM Re: 3600 Good or Bad [Re: squeeze]  
jockbolter50  Offline
Shop Shark
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 4,905
Gary, as a fellow Brit,I can sympathise.

As the guys say the 3600 isn't a bad truck,but the problems here then arise in trying to obtain parts etc.
The bulk of the vendors here in Blighty are aimed more or less at your trucks smaller brother,the 3100.
Even then they lean more towards the bodywork/interior side of things,(which in many cases are the same as the 3600 anyway)rather than the oily bits.

It sounds that your main gripe is the running gear,and as hardcrab mentions there are options.(even over here)

If however you do decide to cut your losses and assuming you haven't been put off owning a Chevy truck,I can put you in touch with a reputable importer here,who I got my truck from and I'm delighted.
It was exactly what I was looking for,and the beauty was,I could look before I parted with any hard earned cash.
I also know he has a small inventory of second hand parts,that may help if you were to keep yours.
Good luck.

I've definately got this truck thing in my blood ... my DNA sequence has torque settings

"Of all the small nations of this earth,perhaps only the ancient Greeks surpass the Scots in their contribution to mankind" Winston Churchill.

1950 Chevy Advance Design 3100 in Scotland
In the Stovebolt Gallery
More pix on Flickr .

#748115 - Thu May 19 2011 12:02 AM Re: 3600 Good or Bad [Re: jockbolter50]  
GMONIZ  Offline
Master Gabster
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 5,867
You have a lot of options, but what is your desired result? Are you planning on customizing, hot rodding or bringing it back to original stock?

As what has been said, 3/4 ton is a great truck for hauling, but IMO the rear gearing is a little low for UK driving. The body parts are the same, the bed is a little longer and the axles are 8 lug.

1) If you were looking to restore a 3100 Chevrolet pick up and that is the only thing you want, then I would fix up the problems and get it running well and sell it and try and recoup your investment. The next time you are looking for a truck, contact us and I am sure many of us would help you in finding one to your satisfaction.

2) Frame swap. Not all is lost, you can purchase another frame for the truck, they range from $100 - $1500 depending on what has been done with them. I have seen frames (chassis) that were removed from restored trucks with rebuilt engines sell for less than $1000, just because the new owner wanted to hot rod the truck. Remember, you will need the 1954/55 truck frame, not the 1947/53 frame. You could also go the S-10 Chevrolet frame swap too, more work, but modern suspension. You may have to shorten the bed (I think there is a tech tip on this)

3) Change out the front axle and the rear axle and replace it with Mustang II front suspension and install a later rear end with higher gears for better (faster) driving, you can still maintain the 6 lug wheels that you desire. You will lose the 3/4 ton rating, but I have an idea that is not a concern.

4) before you do anything else, start networking with other bolter's that are in the UK, they may be able to help you procure parts or locate the better vendors or just be a good source for building and enjoying these trucks.


#748127 - Thu May 19 2011 01:10 AM Re: 3600 Good or Bad [Re: GMONIZ]  
mendonjo  Offline
Shop Shark
Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 377
East Tennessee
I am somewhat of a newbie but I ran into this when I picked up a 62 long wheelbase and wanted the shorter one.

Coldn't you just
1. Cut 9-1/4 out of the frame (after the cab)
2. Shorten the box sides (drill out the spot welds on the front support and move toward the rear). You will lose the front stake pocket.
3. Don't change the wheels, you won't see the 8 lug under the hubcaps anyway.
4. You will have to shorten the driveshaft or find one from another truck.

at least that is the lower cost option.

Certailnly a pain but the hotrodders I know whould think nothing of it, Heck they section body panels, chop the top, put different front ends under them - you name it.... I'd do it.

Last edited by mendonjo; Thu May 19 2011 01:12 AM.

1955 First Series 3100

#748146 - Thu May 19 2011 02:40 AM Re: 3600 Good or Bad [Re: mendonjo]  
mobileortho  Offline
Shop Shark
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 1,629
Hampton, VA
I agree with GMONIZ,It all depends on what you want to do with your truck. As a 3600 owner myself, I initially thought of shortening it but I'm glad I didn't. I haven't had any issues with parts, much of which is interchangeable with the 3100.

Robert C.
Think critically, grow spiritually, change your world..

If it's true what they say, "You learn from your mistakes,"
I'm a Genius in the making.

1950 3600

#748164 - Thu May 19 2011 03:18 AM Re: 3600 Good or Bad [Re: mobileortho]  
harryr  Offline
Wrench Fetcher
Joined: Jan 2011
Posts: 199
Interesting discussion. Thought I would add my 2 cents.

I love my 1953 3600. Very strong - probably overbuilt but who cares? I cannot imagine why anyone would want to cut it down. If you want a 3100 size, why not buy a 3100. Nor have I found any parts issues. Between what's out there on this great site, what's on the bay, and what's in the junkyards, I have always (so far) found what I needed easy and cheap.

I am now mounting a side spare without worrying about a "dimpled" fender. Try that with a 3100. I have replaced all the wheels and tires, and now run "old school" 16 inch rims with 215/85s - diameter is over 30" - and old school 8-lug hubcaps that fit very nice on my clips. Yes, they do clear the rear hubs. Also changed the gears to 4.10. I needed help with that, but not an insurmountable task.

Net result is that I picked up about 12 highway mph at same engine speed. Now she cruises nicely. Four speed, double-clutch, living the dream.


When is the last time you did something for the first time ...

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